Notice of Request for Information: Challenges and Opportunities for the American Solar Industry
The U.S. Department of Energy Solar Energy Technologies Office (SETO) seeks information to help inform its research priorities, as part of its annual planning process. The purpose of this Request for Information (RFI) is to solicit feedback from industry, academia, research laboratories, government agencies, and other stakeholders to identify areas of interest related to challenges and opportunities for the American solar industry that are appropriate for federal government funding. This is solely a request for information and not a Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA).
Filing of Contracts and Purchase Agreements Associated With the Export of Natural Gas
The Department of Energy (DOE or the Department) is proposing an interpretive rule to clarify certain DOE regulations governing the export of natural gas, including liquefied natural gas (LNG), under the Natural Gas Act (NGA). Under DOE's regulations, any person seeking authorization to export natural gas from the United States, or to amend an existing export authorization, must provide DOE's Office of Fossil Energy (DOE/FE) with a copy of ``all relevant contracts and purchase agreements.'' DOE is proposing this interpretive rule to clarify the types of contracts and purchase agreements associated with the export of natural gas that DOE considers to be ``relevant'' for purposes of these regulations. DOE's regulations also impose a ``continuing obligation'' on authorization holders to notify DOE/FE ``as soon as practicable'' of any prospective or actual changes to the information submitted during the application process upon which the authorization was issued, including ``the terms and conditions of any applicable contracts.'' In this proposed interpretative rule, DOE is seeking to clarify the phrase ``as soon as practicable'' to mean within 30 days of the execution of the contracts.
Eliminating the End Use Reporting Provision in Authorizations for the Export of Liquefied Natural Gas
The Department of Energy's Office of Fossil Energy (DOE/FE) is discontinuing its practice, adopted in 2016, of including an ``end use'' reporting provision in orders authorizing the export of domestically produced natural gas, including liquefied natural gas (LNG), issued under section 3 of the Natural Gas Act (NGA). Under this practice, many authorization holders are currently required to track and report the country (or countries) of destination into which their exported LNG or natural gas was ``received for end use.'' Due to practical concerns about this reporting requirement and a reconsideration of the need for the requirement given those concerns, DOE/FE has determined that it is prudent to discontinue this requirement in export authorizations going forward. DOE/FE will revert to its prior practice of requiring authorization holders to report, in relevant part, the country (or countries) into which the exported LNG or natural gas ``was actually delivered.'' DOE/FE believes this action will enhance the accuracy of information provided by authorization holders and will reduce administrative burdens for the U.S. LNG export market. This policy statement affects only future export authorizations issued by DOE/FE. However, concurrently with the issuance of this policy statement, DOE/FE is issuing a blanket order removing the end use provision from applicable existing export authorizations issued from February 2016 to present.